Navigation Links
Drinking Late in First Trimester May Be Most Hazardous
Date:1/17/2012

By Maureen Salamon
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Jan. 17 (HealthDay News) -- It's known that drinking during pregnancy leaves babies vulnerable to a spectrum of abnormalities called fetal alcohol syndrome. Now, a new study pinpoints the latter half of the first trimester as a critical time in the development of some of the syndrome's most telling physical characteristics.

Study authors also stressed that their research illustrates there is no safe amount of drinking during pregnancy, since the amount of drinking that produced these features in infants varied from woman to woman.

"The fact that we didn't find a safe threshold is important," said study author Christina Chambers, an associate professor of pediatrics and family and preventive medicine at the University of California, San Diego. "Not every child of women who drink even very heavily has all the features, so there are certain susceptibility factors that we don't know."

The study appears online Jan. 16 ahead of print publication in the April issue of the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. The authors say it is one of the first to examine the impact of quantity, frequency and timing of alcohol exposure on the condition.

Thought to affect about 1 percent of the American population, fetal alcohol syndrome can result in physical, behavioral and learning problems. People with the syndrome may have abnormal facial features, such as a smooth ridge between the nose and upper lip, small head size, unusually small-set eyes and shorter-than-average height.

The 992 women in the study were enrolled in the California Teratogen Information Service and Clinical Research Program between 1978 and 2005, which provided confidential risk assessments for any potential toxin exposures during pregnancy. Every three months during the remainder of their pregnancies, they were asked about their use of alcohol and other substances, including specific dates of use, drinks per day, number of binge episodes and maximum number of drinks.

Information about their babies' development was collected after birth, and each newborn was then examined by a dysmorphologist, a specialist in structural birth defects, to look for evidence of fetal alcohol syndrome as well as other conditions.

While higher levels of alcohol exposure were strongly linked to a greater risk of infants born smaller and lighter, with small heads and a smooth ridge between the nose and upper lip, the most significant associations were observed during the second half of the first trimester of pregnancy -- defined as 43 to 84 days after conception.

For every one-drink increase in the daily average number of drinks consumed during this stage of pregnancy, there was a 25 percent higher risk for having a smooth ridge between the nose and upper lip; a 22 percent higher chance of having an abnormally thin upper lip; a 12 percent elevated risk of having a smaller-than-normal head; a 16 percent greater risk of reduced birth weight; and an 18 percent higher chance of reduced birth length.

In addition, the likelihood of shorter birth length was associated with drinking in any trimester, the study found.

"There is almost 40 years of research [on fetal alcohol syndrome], but one of the challenges has been determining what are the windows of risk and the patterns in timing and quantity of alcohol use, and this [study] addresses that," said Tom Donaldson, president of the National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome in Washington, D.C. "This article very clearly demonstrates that risk begins with any use."

Chambers and her colleagues theorized that alcohol exposure in the first six weeks of pregnancy -- when many women don't yet know they're pregnant -- may result in higher miscarriage rates, although the study did not include women who had miscarriages or stillbirths.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more information about fetal alcohol syndrome.

SOURCES: Christina Chambers, Ph.D., M.P.H., associate professor, pediatrics, and family and preventative medicine, University of California, San Diego; Tom Donaldson, president, National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (NOFAS), Washington, D.C.; April 2012 issue Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, online, Jan. 16, 2012


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Drinking Milk While Pregnant May Lower Kids MS Risk
2. Coffee Drinking and Caffeine Associated With Reduced Risk of Hospitalization for Heart Rhythm Disturbances
3. Anti-Drinking Ads That Engender Guilt May Not Work
4. Light Drinking Might Help Keep Women Slim
5. Mother of Binge Drinking Victim Urges Students and Parents to Discuss Signs of Alcohol Poisoning, Emphasize Peer Responsibility Prior to Spring Break
6. Obesity, Drinking a Double Threat to the Liver
7. Progress In Access To Safe Drinking-Water; Sanitation Needs Greater Efforts
8. Light Drinking Good for the Heart
9. Binge drinking doesnt affect next-day student test-taking
10. Underage Drinking Soars in U.S.
11. Heavy Daily Drinking Linked to Worse Health
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Drinking Late in First Trimester May Be Most Hazardous
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... ... TherapySites, the leading website and online marketing ... Association. This new relationship allows TherapySites to continue to extend their online ... and promotional offers. , "TCA is extremely excited about this new partnership, as ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 27, 2016 , ... TopConsumerReviews.com recently ... of Eyeglasses . , Millions of individuals in the United States and Canada ... become a way to both correct vision and make a fashion statement. Even celebrities ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... Viejo, California (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... ... Final Cut Pro X. , "Film editors can give their videos a whole new ... said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProSlice Levels contains ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... ... have been diagnosed with endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan to not ... comprehensive approach that can help for preservation of fertility and ultimately achieving a ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... The temporary closing of Bruton Memorial Library on June 21 due to a possible lice ... overlooked aspect of head lice: the parasite’s ability to live away from a human host, ... a necessary one in the event that lice have simply gotten out of control. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... The Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy (AMCP) ... would allow biopharmaceutical companies to more easily share health ... and coverage decisions, a move that addresses the growing ... The recommendations address restrictions in the sharing of ... label, a prohibition that hinders decision makers from accessing ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of ... report to their offering. ... The World Market for Companion Diagnostics covers the world market ... the report includes the following: , World ... Region (N. America, EU, ROW), 2015-2020 , World IVD ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Belgium , June 24, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... announced the appointment of Dr. Edward Futcher ... a Non-Executive Director, effective June 23, 2016.Dr. Futcher ... and Nominations and Governance Committees.  As a non-executive ... provide independent expertise and strategic counsel to VolitionRx ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: